We Spent 789 Million Minutes Reading the Most Engaging Stories of 2017. Here Are the Top 15

Chartbeat measured major media publishers throughout the year

Photos of the Women's March from around the world was one of the year's most engaged stories.
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Chartbeat, the social engagement measurement tool, tracked more than 39 million stories from media sites around the world.

People spent 788,962, 375 minutes engaging with the top 100 articles and essays across the entire spectrum of human emotion and experience. Chartbeat broke the stories into six categories: Indecency Exposed, Human Portraits, Year One, Terror Hits Home, Disaster Strikes and Super-Charged.

Here are the top 15 stories in order of engagement time from major media publishers:

1. My Family’s Slave — The Atlantic

An essay published in The Atlantic, this story was highly regarded for its honesty and for the dark details it reveals of the author’s family history. Readers spent 58 million minutes reading it.

2. I Just Wanted To Survive — ESPN

This story focused on the kidnapping, torture and survival of University of Rochester football player Nicholas Kollias.

3. Multiple Weapons Found in Las Vegas Gunman’s Hotel Room — The New York Times

This is the first of a handful of stories about the mass shooting in Las Vegas and the disturbing details surrounding the gunman’s life and the events leading up to the tragedy in October.

4. Something went ‘incredibly wrong’ with Las Vegas gunman, brother says — CNN

5. Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation? — The Atlantic

Proving that print isn’t quite dead, this piece on technology and evolving needs was an excerpt from the author’s upcoming book, iGen.

6. Weapons cache found at Las Vegas shooter’s home — CNN

7. Harvey Weinstein Paid Off Sexual Harassment Accusers for Decades — The New York Times

What ended up becoming an opening of the floodgates, this groundbreaking story from Oct. 5 featured on-the-record accounts of survivors.

8. You May Want to Marry My Husband — The New York Times

As Chartbeat notes, it can be rare for a non-news story to break through. This essay was a touching way for the author to say goodbye to her husband before she died of cancer.

9. Pictures From Women’s Marches on Every Continent — The New York Times

The result of an election in the United States made waves around the world. This collection of photos was a way for the Times to showcase just how women and their supporters showed up in in-your-face ways in January.

10. The Lost Children of Tuam — The New York Times

This was a report out of Ireland that showcased how disease and neglect can affect a town, country and society through an under-told story.

11. Trump and Staff Rethink Tactics After Stumbles — The New York Times

As the Year On category would indicate, many of the top stories from of 2017 were focused on politics and specifically on President Trump’s decisions and his inner circle’s momentum.

12. Portraits of the Las Vegas shooting victims — CNN

13. The secret lives of young ISIS fighters — BBC

Unlike some of the spikes of interest on most of the stories on the overall list, this story had a long life as people kept coming back to read more about this devastating and eye-opening experience.

14. ‘This deal will make me look terrible’: Full transcripts of Trump’s calls with Mexico and Australia — The Washington Post

Another look inside domestic politics, this piece divulged semi-private transcripts from some of President Trump’s early diplomatic dealings.

15. Louis C.K. is accused by 5 women of sexual misconduct — The New York Times

Another outcome of the Weinstein scandal was that other men in positions of power were beginning to be finally held accountable after years of harassment and misconduct. This piece centered on Louis C.K. and the whispers and rumors surrounding him becoming louder for the first time.

To read more about the most engaging stories from 2017, click here.

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